Perez pulls off Baku double to win Azerbaijan GP from Verstappen

The Mexican won his second Azerbaijan Grand Prix to reduce his arrears in the championship

-

Sergio Perez once again displayed his street circuit prowess to lead a dominant Red Bull one-two at the Azerbaijan Grand Prix and close the gap on Max Verstappen to six points in the drivers’ championship.

The Mexican started third but benefitted from the timing of an early safety car to leapfrog his teammate before keeping the world champion at bay for his sixth GP victory and a Baku double, having won the Saturday Sprint.

“It really worked out today for us,” Perez said. “I think we had better deg on the first stint then the safety car came and bunched everyone up and it was a long race on the hard tyres.

“I think it was very close between us. We both hit the wall a few times and the way Max pushed me was really hard but we kept it under control.

“I had a wee bit of luck my front-right tyre didn’t blow up but we survived.”

Verstappen can count himself unlucky having passed Charles Leclerc for the lead on Lap 4 before being caught out by the retirement of Nyck de Vries.

When the order was reset behind the safety car, the Dutchman was third and once again made light work of Leclerc, but he was unable to match Perez and had to settle for second.

Nearly 20 seconds behind, pole-sitter Leclerc held off Fernando Alonso to clinch the final podium spot, with the Spaniard taking an impressive fourth for Aston Martin ahead of Carlos Sainz in the other Ferrari.

Lewis Hamilton finished sixth for Mercedes, recovering from 10th after the safety car period, with Lance Stroll seventh and George Russell eighth.

Rounding out the points were Lando Norris in ninth and Yuki Tsunoda in 10th.

Max’s miserable weekend

It was an unusually scrappy weekend for the world champion and championship leader, who was beaten twice in as many days by his teammate.

Perez’s prowess around the Baku City Circuit was once again on display as he resisted the pressure applied by Verstappen, before slowly eking out a comfortable advantage.

In his pursuit, the Dutchman’s frustration was evident as he complained on team radio and clipped the wall several times in a desperate bid to make up time.

His best efforts were in vain but he remains the championship leader heading to the Miami GP, although his advantage has been cut.

“Of course the safety car I was a bit unlucky,” Verstappen said. “I struggled with the balance.

“We know it’s a very long season. Baku is very different to Miami and Miami is different to the other circuits.

“We are always learning and you can’t always be perfect.”

Hamilton rolls back the years

Another driver caught out by the retirement of De Vries was Hamilton. The seven-time world champion pitted from fifth at the end of Lap 9, only to find himself 10th when the safety car picked up the pack.

However, Hamilton passed Nico Hulkenberg and Ocon in the first two corners at the restart before pulling off one of the moves of the day on Russell for seventh.

He then took advantage of Stroll’s mistake to snatch sixth from the Canadian on Lap 37, where he finished after being unable to get close enough to make a move on Sainz for fifth.

Andrew Wrighthttps://total-motorsport.com
Sports Journalist for Total-Motorsport.com
- Advertisment -

LATEST NEWS

Red Bull bosses agree on Liam Lawson F1 prospects in 2025

0
Christian Horner and RB CEO Peter Bayer refused to back Liam Lawson's prospects for a full-time Formula 1 drive...

After Carlos Sainz’s Mercedes denial, why does his future remain an enigma?

0
Ferrari swinging the axe on Carlos Sainz's career in scarlet must have stung, but the Spaniard at least had...

Where does Charles Leclerc rank 2024 Monaco Grand Prix win?

0
Charles Leclerc is a race winner for the first time in almost two years as the Ferrari ace crushed...

What we learned from the 2024 Monaco Grand Prix

0
The 2024 Monaco Grand Prix may not have served up a classic, but it wasn’t short on storylines as...

Look away Checo – Horner praises Perez’s F1 rival as star fights for Red...

0
Christian Horner insists Red Bull will make a decision about Sergio Perez's Red Bull future "in the fullness of...

F1 Winners and Losers of 2024 Monaco GP

0
Charles Leclerc vanquished his Monte Carlo demons to finally take victory at his home race, while Red Bull continued...

F1 Driver Ratings – Monaco GP 2024

0
Charles Leclerc was in dreamland as the Ferrari driver finally celebrated an elusive victory at home race at the...

2024 Indy 500 Race Results

0
Josef Newgarden joined an elite group of drivers by winning the Indy 500 for the second consecutive year in...

Newgarden takes sensational Indy 500 win after epic battle for glory

0
The Indianapolis 500 never fails to excite and even a four-hour rain delay couldn't dampen the drama for IndyCar's...

2024 Indy 500: Results and Highlights as Newgarden wins

0
Welcome to this Total Motorsport live blog for the 2024 Indy 500, is among the most prestigious motorsport events...
- Advertisment -
Exit mobile version